NHL Picks: Black Hawks vs. Blue Jackets

David Lawrence

Saturday, January 26, 2013 2:56 PM UTC

Saturday, Jan. 26, 2013 2:56 PM UTC

After their opening-night win over the Nashville Predators, the Columbus Blue Jackets appeared to have turned a corner. They even followed it up by pushing the Detroit Red Wings in a shootout loss.

NHL Betting – Blackhawks vs. Blue Jackets NHL Picks

However, two straight defeats by a combined margin of 9-1 is having most people remember why the Blue Jackets were expected to be one of the worst teams in the NHL.

On Saturday, they are a big underdog on the NHL odds as they get set to host the Chicago Blackhawks

Record: 17-14 (+308)

The Chicago Blackhawks can win because…

Their offense has been clicking, which means scoring on Saturday should be child’s play. As mentioned, the Blue Jackets have given up nine goals over the last two games, including an EA Sports-type goal by Colorado’s Matt Duchene. Those nine goals were scored by the Avs and the Phoenix Coyotes; not exactly offensive juggernauts.

Meanwhile, the Blackhawks have won all four of their games to start the season and have scored at least three goals per game while averaging 4.3 per outing. The Blue Jackets will be giving up plenty of goals.

Chicago comes into this game with plenty of momentum as all of their offensive weapons are clicking. There was some very brief talk of the Blackhawks buying out Marian Hossa after the new CBA was announced but nobody has made a peep now that he’s tallied five goals in four games. Jonathan Toews, Patrick Sharp and Patrick Kane have also combined for 17 points so far.

The Blue Jackets are a really feeble opponent. Unless the Blackhawks are half asleep here, they should breeze to another win for the perhaps not so valuable, but almost sure thing money line hockey pick

The Columbus Blue Jackets can win because…

They are playing at home. The Blue Jackets played three of their first four games on the road and all of them came in the span of five nights. Now they’ve had a day off to rest, regroup and prepare for the Blackhawks. That means we should see a rejuvenated team on Saturday night.

While it’s true that the Blackhawks have done their fair share of scoring this season, it bares mentioning that the Blackhawks have allowed at least two goals every single game. That’s not bad but it’s not ideal. If teams start hitting three or four, some of those Blackhawk wins will turn to losses very quickly.


Outlook & NHL Betting Prediction:

I have this game pegged for an over. The Blue Jackets defense and goaltending are extremely questionable and the Blackhawks are probably the best offensive team in the league right now. Other than them playing on the road, there should be little that stops them from contributing at least three goals to this total. The Blackhawks have also allowed an average of 2.5 goals per game this season, which means we are already close to hitting the over, which is at 5.5.

Look for the Blue Jackets offense to come to life after a couple of games where they dozed off. This has the makings of a high-scoring affair, so I’m taking the over.

NHL Picks: Over 5.5 at Bet365

And check out David Schwabs pick on the Maple Leafs - Rangers game!
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